In 2008 I started a Community Organizer Hall of Fame, a series of profiles of persons who are doing selfless work for the benefit of others. Yesterday Marisol Valles Garcia, a 20-year-old mother and student of criminology was sworn in as sheriff of Praxedis G. Guerrero, a small border town caught in the crossfire of two rival drug cartels. Her only police experience has been as a secretary in the station. The former sheriff was gunned down July 2009, according to the AP story. No one would take on the job until Garcia stepped up.
The tiny but energetic Valles Garcia, whose only police experience was a stint as a department secretary, says she wants her 13 officers to practice a special brand of community policing. She plans to hire more women — she currently has three — and assign each to a neighborhood to talk with families, promote civic values and detect potential crimes before they happen.
“My people are out there going door to door, looking for criminals, and (in homes) where there are none, trying to teach values to the families,” she said in her first official appearance on Wednesday. “The project is … simple, based on values, principles and crime prevention in contacts house-by-house.”
As I’m reading a biography of Elizabeth I, I am applauding this Garcia on so many levels. I will also keep her in my prayers.
For the complete story by AP writer Praxedis G. Guerrero click on this link.
Hat tip: Clayton LeBouef